Republicans seize lower house in US mid-term polls

Democrats rally desperately to defend president Barack Obama in mid-term elections
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Senator Barbara Boxer (C) celebrates with daughter Nicole (L) and Senator Dianne Feinstein (R) after winning a fourth term, in the Democratic Party headquarters at the Renaissance Hotel in Hollywood on November 2, 2010. (Getty Images)
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Democratic senatorial candidate Richard Blumenthal (3R) with family, from left, Michael, Matthew, his wife Cynthia, Claire and David join him on stage to announce his victory over Republican candidate Linda McMahon during an election night event at the Hartford Hilton November 2, 2010 in Hartford, Connecticut. Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Richard Blumenthal will succeed the retiring U.S. Sen. Christopher Dodd (D-CT). (Getty Images)
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The nation's mood was dark as Democrats rallied desperately to defend President Barack Obama and angry Republicans hoped to deliver a crippling rebuke. (Getty Images)
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There was little of the festive atmosphere that swept the country two years ago when Obama was elected the nation's first black US president.(Getty Images)
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The mid-term elections see the lower house of Congress, plus over a third of the Senate and most governors' mansions up for grabs. But many consider the vote is a referendum on Obama himself. (Getty Images)
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Democratic candidate for Florida Governor Alex Sink speaks to the crowd while waiting for final results at her election night party during midterm elections on November 2, 2010 in Tampa, Florida. Sink is up against Republican gubernatorial candidate Rick Scott to fill the slot currently held by Florida Gov. Charlie Crist who is running for US Senate. (Getty Images)
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Democratic candidate for Wisconsin, Russ Feingold concedes to Republican candidate Ron Johnson during his election night party in the midterm elections on November 2, 2010 in Middleton, Wisconsin (Getty Images)
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Governor-elect John Hickenlooper's Lieutenant Governor Joseph Garcia shakes hands after he and Hickenlooper gave victory speeches at the Marriortt City Center November 2, 2010 in downtown Denver, Colorado. Hickenlooper defeated Republican challenger Dan Maes while incumbent U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO) was running ahead of Republican challenger Ken Buck for U.S. Senate in early results. (Getty Images)
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US Senator Bill Nelson (C) speaks to the media while waiting for Democratic candidate for Florida Governor Alex Sink to make her appearance at her election night party during midterm elections on November 2, 2010 in Tampa, Florida. Sink is up against Republican gubernatorial candidate Rick Scott to fill the slot currently held by Florida Gov. Charlie Crist who is running for U.S. Senate. (Getty Images)
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Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele addresses the Republican National Congressional Committee's midterm election results watch party at the Grand Hyatt hotel November 2, 2010 in Washington, DC. Most polling conducted ahead of today's elections point to a change in power in the House, where Republicans could win the 39 seats they need to take control of the chamber. (Getty Images)